Lawyers.Buzz, an independent news source in the legal community, reports on the mounting lawsuits against the producers of Cartiva implants. Designed to tackle serious arthritis in the big toe, a condition termed as hallux limitus or hallus rigidus, this revolutionary product has come under fire by many of its recipients. These implants are under scrutiny for allegedly causing serious health complications, leaving patients in more pain and discomfort than before the implantation procedure. The question now being asked is whether the risks associated with the implant are genuinely low as promoted.
Understanding the Role of Cartiva Implants
These synthetic cartilage implants were intended to provide relief to the 2.2 million Americans suffering from hallus rigidus. Arthritis causes degradation of the cartilage in the big toe joint, leading to severe, debilitating pain. The promise of the Cartiva is that they can replace the degraded cartilage, offering a cushioning effect and much-needed pain relief to the sufferer.
Why is this important? This artificial insert provided an alternative to an archaic procedure known as arthrodesis—a surgical fusion of the joint. Unlike Cartiva implantation, arthrodesis entails a more complicated operation with an extended healing period. In essence, these implants held the promise of less pain and a faster recovery.
Lawsuits Ignite Controversy
Surprisingly, a slew of lawsuits against Cartiva implants has surfaced recently. Among these litigations is a claim filed by a firefighter and emergency medical technician, Peachey. She states that she had received a Cartiva implant in December 2019, due to her struggling with arthritis in the right big toe. Post-implantation, she allegedly experienced:
- Serious dysfunction
- Severe pain
In August 2021, Peachey’s doctors informed her that her toe implant had disastrously failed, contributing to a myriad of health complications. Shortly after, they surgically removed the device, which led to a distressing necessity – the fusion of the bones in her right big toe. This incident significantly curtailed its flexibility and utility, leading to drastic bone loss and a permanent deformity. Shockingly, her lawsuit contends that her body may have reacted adversely to the implant, inciting arthritis progression and possibly necessitating another fusion surgery.
The Real Cost of Failure:
Peachey’s case is not an isolated event. Other lawsuits against Cartiva replicate these allegations. The mounting legal action asserts that the implants, marred by design defects, inevitably fail. Despite the manufacturer’s claims of their product’s low failure rate, an alarming study published in November 2020 contradicts this. It reports that a staggering 64% of Cartiva recipients experienced failure within four weeks of surgery. This statistic climbed to an unnerving 79% after 19 months.
Could this mean that Cartiva implants are leaving individuals in worse condition?
Some argue that bone removal during the toe implant surgery has led to significantly shortened big toes. This outcome has reportedly led to other foot injuries as a result of the offloading effect.
Given such distressing patient outcomes, it is likely that many implant recipients will seek compensation through lawsuit filings against the manufacturer. The complainants accuse the producers of failing to fulfill their duty to verify that their devices were unquestionably safe. They also allege that the company did not warn patients about the heightened risk of implant failure.
As the legal proceedings unfold, what will this mean for the future of Cartiva implants? How will this affect the 2.2 million Americans contending with hallux limitus? Lawyers.Buzz will continue to follow these lawsuits closely, providing updates as these stories progress.
Stay tuned for more information on the 2023 Cartiva implant lawsuit updates.